Tuesday, 17 October 2023
Questions without Notice
My question is to the Prime Minister. Your government will give property investors like yourself $38 billion in tax concessions this year. But as a result of your decision to lock in unlimited rent increases at National Cabinet, renters will pay an extra $4.9 billion in rent increases. Can you explain to the millions of Australian renters why property investors should get billions but renters should cop unlimited rent increases every 12 months?
Honourable members interjecting—
I joined the Labor Party when I was at school because could never have afforded to join the Greens! Let me just make that point about those opposite there. I joined the party of working-class people who aspired to a better opportunity and a better life for their children, and that is what we do.
We also want to make sure that we have serious housing policy. The policies put forward by those in the Greens political party have been considered by every single state and territory government, every economist and everyone in the property sector, that what they will do is make it harder for renters and not easier. Harder for renters, not easier, which is why we're working on the issue of supply. And that's why, eventually, the Greens saw the light, to your credit, and voted for the Housing Australia Future Fund. Having held up a fund—
I'll take the interjection because he said 'after we got more money'. The big complaint from the Greens party, after we announced the Social Housing Accelerator, was they didn't know about it. That was the complaint. 'Why didn't you tell us about it?' was what they said. What we will do, on this side of the House, is always take every single opportunity to put more money into public and social housing. That is what we will do, that is what we have done and that is why we work with states and territories as part of making sure that we get greater supply in housing.
Already, can I say, there's the Social Housing Accelerator. I have been with the former premier Daniel Andrews, who announced a significant program there in Melbourne to help housing supply in Victoria. I have started the Social Housing Accelerator program in Sydney as well, with the New South Wales Premier, Chris Minns. We went to the electorate of Banks to announce a classic example of something that should happen, which is for three dilapidated homes that were uninhabitable to be knocked over and to build, in their place, 11 or 12 purpose built one- or two-bedroom homes which older Australians can have. That will boost housing supply. After the former coalition government in New South Wales left office there was less public housing than there was when they came into office 12 years earlier. The Labor Party has, in our DNA, support for housing. We will continue to do so. (Time expired)